A garden log cabin is a terrific addition to most gardens but before you start realising your garden dream you need to stop and check if you need to get planning permission. Your first port of call is your local council. After an initial chat about your plans they will advise you of any particular circumstances surrounding your building. You may think your project is straightforward and it usually will be – but always check. It's also a good idea to chat to any neighbours who may be affected by the cabin. Get everyone on side from the start.

You don't usually need planning permission for domestic outbuildings, as long as they are used for a domestic purpose related to your house. However, you may require planning permission if any of the following apply (the list is not exhaustive, so if in doubt please check with your local planning authority):

  • If you plan to erect the shed within 5 metres of any part of your house.
  • If the total area of the ground covered by any buildings or other structures in the garden area (excluding the original, main house) is greater than 50% of the total garden area.
  • If there is a condition in the original planning consent for your property which states that garden sheds/outhouses etc. cannot be erected without the consent of the local planning authority.
  • If your property is a listed building or within a conservation area or an area of outstanding natural beauty. If this is the case, you will need to contact your local planning authority as development will be restricted.
  • If you plan to run a business from the building, or use it to store goods in connection with a business.
  • In addition, no part of the garden building should be nearer to the public highway than the existing house, or any point 20 metres from that highway, whichever is nearer to the highway.

The bottom line, and this is the bottom line, is to check from the very outset with your local council.